The past four days have been pretty intense. I started demo on the Voris house and it was no small feat. From chain link fences to damp and musty carpet, poorly put up walls to leftover remains from tenants past – it was a cleansing this house has needed for years, if not decades.
I’ve learned that there are no surprises when it comes to these things. It is all one big shock to the system and you just have to take it all in stride. It can be frustrating to downright sad at times. You wonder who in their right mind would live in this? Who, on the other hand would continue to just take the cheapest, easiest route possible out on every fix?
You get mad at the past owners and the past occupants. There isn’t just one finger to point because it is a two-way street. It continues to be a problem until somebody else comes along and tries to change the trajectory of the future.
One aspect my project Go Urban, Young Man is to highlight the current state that things are in. It’s not just a continuation of hiding what’s there and sweeping it under the rug. Seriously, major parts of Peoria are disgraceful. The buildings, the streets, the people – you look around and you feel as if you are in a different world or something. No one in their right minds would bother with them. Why should they? It’s somebody elses problem, right?
When large sections of a city are deemed no longer salvageable by everyday people I tend to want to look a little further into it. Why is it that an area that offers such a deep history, a range of housing options, close proximity to major employers downtown, access to the most prominent natural asset in the region, and all at a fraction of the cost not the hottest spot in town?
To me, it became apparent that it’s not what isn’t there – it’s what is there presently that is keeping people away. My assessment has been that this area isn’t lacking one major project, but a lot of little ones that come together over time to actually mend what has come undone. And so, in order to hopefully do my part in changing the future of this house, this neighborhood, and maybe encourage others to do the same, here are some highlights of what I’ve been up too…
I hate chain link fences. Period. It’s not just that they are unappealing aesthetically, it’s everything they stand for. So I tear them out every chance I get. I even got the neighbor to agree that it was time for his side to go. So I tore that out too.
It was a long weekend, but a productive one. Any time you can fill a dumpster to the top something happened.
The next steps of my project are the most important. What goes back into the house and who provides it is a big part of the community development aspect that otherwise lacks when someone is just out to flip a house and maximize profits.
To see how you, or your company can contribute to my project GO URBAN follow this link: http://igg.me/at/GOURBAN/x/2435869